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Are Chiropractic Patients Less Likely To Be Vaccinated?

Are Chiropractic Patients Less Likely To Be Vaccinated?

The Chiro.Org Blog

Influenza vaccination among chiropractic patients and other users of complementary and alternative medicine: Are chiropractic patients really different?

SOURCE: Preventive Medicine 2011 (Feb 4) [Epub ahead of print]

Davis MA, Smith M, Weeks WB.

Center for Health Policy, The Dartmouth Institute for Health Policy & Clinical Practice, 35 Centerra Parkway, Lebanon, NH 03766, United States; Grace Cottage Hospital, Townshend, VT, United States.

OBJECTIVE: Previous studies suggest a possible association between using chiropractic care and lower influenza vaccination rates. We examined adult influenza vaccination rates for chiropractic patients to determine if they are different than those for users of other complementary and alternative medicine (CAM).

METHOD: We used the 2007 National Health Interview Survey to examine influenza vaccination rates among adult respondents who were considered high priority for the influenza vaccine (n=12,164). We separated respondents into clinically meaningful categories according to age and whether or not they had recently used chiropractic care, some other type of CAM, or neither. We used adjusted logistic regression to determine whether user status predicted influenza vaccination.

RESULTS: Only 33% of younger and 64% of older high priority Chiropractic Users were vaccinated in 2007; these rates approximated those of Non-CAM Users. However, younger Non-Chiropractic CAM Users were more likely than Non-CAM Users to have been vaccinated (p-value=0.05). In adjusted logistic regressions, we found statistically insignificant differences when comparing Chiropractic Users to Non-CAM Users for younger adults (OR=0.93(95% CI:0.76-1.13), or for older adults OR=0.90 (95% CI:0.64-1.20).

CONCLUSION: Chiropractic Users appear no less likely to be vaccinated for influenza; whereas, younger Non-chiropractic CAM Users are more likely than Non-CAM Users to be vaccinated.

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